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vatican tickets

What is the difference between a "timed ticket" and a "skip the line" ticket?
Is one better than the other or are they the same?

Posted by
7 posts

I'm sorry to report but the Vatican tries to cram as many people as possible in each day, and that's a LOT of people. I had "skip the line" tix & still waited 2 hours to get in. Then, it gets worse; the mob scene--thousand of people force-marched thru the museum to get to the Sistine Chapel. It was the worst day in a month in Europe. If I had to guess (I see no good info here) get tickets & be there at 8 am (coffee & pastry in hand) & be one on the first to get in. Maybe. [Yes, the museum is magnificent, but you cannot stop & admire. And even in Oct. it was hot as blazes.] A fantastic dinner atop Hotel Raphael was some compensation.

Posted by
14763 posts

They are the same but I'd order your tickets for the museum from the Vatican website and not a 3rd party. If you are not looking for a tour, this is the ticket you want:

You will need to choose a specific day and open time slot. Again, these tickets are for the museums only. "The Vatican" is a bigger complex than just the museums, and you'd need additional tickets to see other parts of it. Most of those parts can only be accessed with a tour but St. Peter's basilica is free and does not require tickets. The line for that one can be long but moves pretty fast.

Understand as well that while pre-ordering timed-entry tickets allows you to skip the looooong ticket line, no one skips the security-check queue but it's much shorter moves pretty fast as well.

Posted by
1393 posts

Depends on the sight. Can you be more specific. Usually "skip the line" means you have purchased your ticket in advance. "Timed ticket" generally means you have to be there at that time to purchase your ticket.

Posted by
203 posts

We had a timed ticket for the museum. We were admitted on time and did the tour. It was crowded and had little time for lingering.

I sometimes wonder about people’s expectations. You are at one of the world’s most popular sites and expect a relaxed time with few people. It was hot, but not unbearable.

When i visit a place like the Vatican museum I expect crowds and a less than perfect experience.

I doubt there is a day in Rome, when the top attractions are not crowded.

Posted by
14763 posts

These top attractions in Rome require pre-purchased, timed-entry tickets to avoid long ticket queues: the Colosseum, the Vatican Museums and Galleria Borghese. There are no advance "open" tickets for these 3 venues. By "open" I mean being able to enter at any day or hour with a pre-purchased ticket. You must choose a specific day and open time slot on each attraction's ticketing site.

David, I've no idea what sort of tickets you had but I haven't heard of anyone with pre-purchased tickets from the Vatican's website spending 2 hours in a queue. Your tickets should have been timed-entry so a short shuffle through the security queue. And yes, parts of the museums are very, very crowded. They're the #1 or #2 attraction in Rome and so early-entrance tours and Friday night late openings (in season) have become rather popular ways to try and enjoy the more heavily-visited sections without being overrun.

Editing to add: Sandi, let us know if you don't have links to the official websites for the other 2 attractions mentioned above, OK?

Posted by
225 posts

We were in Rome last year. We hired a guide from Eyes of Rome and had our own tour.. Well worth it!!!! Karin was excellent. We saw everything and she was very knowledgeable and experienced with moving through the Vatican. We took the early tour--7:30 am start. It was perfect--light is fantastic for pictures. Crowds are lighter, we weren't rushed or pushed.